NCAA Women's basketball: How Notre Dame matches up with Northwestern

Gayle Bell
South Bend Tribune


WHO: No. 9 Notre Dame (2-0) vs. Northwestern (1-1).

WHEN: Wednesday, 9 p.m. ET.

WHERE: Welsh-Ryan Arena (7,039), Evanston, Ill.

TICKETS: Available.

WATCH: Big Ten Network.

LISTEN: WGLQ (99.9 FM; link at UND.com).

More Notre Dame basketball news:Watson, Marshall help No. 9 Notre Dame survive Cal comeback

ABOUT NOTRE DAME: The Irish face Northwestern for the first time in 34 years. The programs located 114 miles apart have met on just three occasions. ND won the last meeting, also in Evanston, 75-63 on Nov. 29, 1988, to move to 1-1 there and 2-1 overall against the Wildcats. … Irish leaders through two games (wins of 88-48 over Northern Illinois and 90-79 over California) are Dara Mabrey (16.0 points per game, 6-of-14 on 3-pointers), Olivia Miles (15.0 points, 8.0 assists, 7.5 rebounds and 4.0 steals), Maddy Westbeld (12.5 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 3.0 blocks), Kylee Watson (12.0 ppg, 10-of-15 on 2s) and Sonia Citron (11.0). … Lauren Ebo (9.0 ppg, 4.5 rpg) and Nat Marshall (9.0 ppg, 4.0 rpg) have paired to deliver another 18.0 points and 8.5 boards off the bench. … Dara Mabrey is now deadlocked with sister Marina at 274 career 3-pointers collegiately, but contrary to the way it’s commonly being referenced, they’re not tied atop the ND chart. Dara notched 155 of hers at Virginia Tech. Her 119 in an Irish uniform leaves her 33 short of joining the ND top 10. … The Irish won their lone Big Ten encounter last season, 76-71 over Michigan State, after going 1-2 in such games over the two prior years. They were 23-0 in such games over the 10 years prior to that.

ABOUT NORTHWESTERN: The Wildcats were whipped 100-57 at No. 20 Oregon in their opener, but bounced back Sunday for a 63-55 home win over Penn. … Northwestern returns 10 of the top 12 scorers off last season’s 17-12 (8-8 Big Ten) club, but lost its premier player in all-league first-teamer and three-time conference defensive Player of the Year Veronica Burton (17.8 points, 6.4 assists, 4.0 steals). Burton was the overall No. 7 pick in last spring’s WNBA draft by the Dallas Wings. … Wildcat leaders are 6-3 sophomore forward Caileigh Walsh (12.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, 1.5 blocks per game), 5-6 senior guard Kaylah Rainey (9.0 points, 2.5 assists), 6-0 grad forward Courtney Shaw (7.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists), 5-11 grad swing Sydney Wood (7.0 points, 4.5 rebounds, 2.0 steals) and 6-1 junior forward Paige Mott (7.0 points). … Shaw averaged 10.0 rebounds last season to rank third in the Big Ten. … Northwestern coach Joe McKeown is in his 15th season there with a 242-199 record, including 60-26 (35-17 Big Ten) since the start of the 2019-20 season. … Before Mary DiStanislao became the second-ever coach at Notre Dame (going 115-79 from 1980-87) she was the first-ever coach at Northwestern, where she went 89-30 from 1975-80 for what remains the best percentage in program history at .748.

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QUOTING: “That was crazy. No other words. I mean, like, whistles blowing left and right. It was very frustrating, but games are gonna be called like that, so you just have to get used to it.” — Olivia Miles, Notre Dame guard, on the 59 fouls whistled during Saturday’s win over Cal.

— By Anthony Anderson